Forget old colour rules for your outfits

Denim is an outift staple, you can pair it with almost anything, like this Alexa jean from the Mavi Gold line. (Supplied)

Denim is an outift staple, you can pair it with almost anything, like this Alexa jean from the Mavi Gold line. (Supplied)

Arlene writes: I have a beautiful Thai silk jacket. It has an orange background with embroidered fuchsia polka dots. What colours can I wear with it?

Marilyn replies: Multi-coloured jackets with no neutrals can be treated as if they were a solid, bold colour. No need to search for a match. Simply anchor your jacket with items in a solid basic colour you enjoy wearing. Don’t get caught up in being matchy-matchy. The contrast will make the most of your special jacket.

Edna writes: I finally have an item in my favorite colour: bright lemon yellow. It is an asymmetrical cardigan in matte jersey. Now I am wondering how to incorporate it into my existing wardrobe, which is mostly black. I don’t want to look like a bumble bee! I do need some summer clothes. I love bold red and cobalt blue too. What colors would you recommend I add to my wardrobe this season?

Marilyn replies: You are very fortunate to be able to wear such a dynamic hue of yellow. Be brave and mix it with your other bold favourites or anchor it with any neutral. Navy or white will look fresh. Tan or grey will make a trendy and more muted statement. Black and lemon make a very potent statement. Use black and silver jewelry to add sparkle and sophistication.

You will definitely not be mimicking a bumble bee unless you add stripes and the hue is warmer!

Ilene writes: I love my jeans and always have. My favorite outfit is one of my assorted dark denim bottoms (pant, capris or skirt) with my matching classic dark jean jacket or vest over a t-shirt. All my denims started off the same dark blue. Now with repeated washing some are lighter than others. Is it acceptable to wear different tones of denim together?

Marilyn replies: Denim clothing has become a staple in many wardrobes. It comes in various weights, fabrics and limitless colours as well as shades of blue. Gone are the days of suiting up in a matched denim outfit.

Yes, you can purchase a matching ensemble and wear it as an outfit. However, if your goal is to have a uniformly coloured denim suit, then learn from your experience and wash your outfit together.

It is also acceptable to mix and match your denim items with the rest of the clothing in your wardrobe. It is not uncommon to slip a jean jacket over a dress to complete a daytime outfit or create an artsy evening look.

Your denim is versatile and can take you everywhere -- all seasons and all times of day. Pull your look together and don’t worry if your denim matches. Remember, lighter and brighter colours attract the eye and draw attention to the area they cover. This is true for denim as well. Try using your darker jeans to anchor pastel items.

If it looks good and feels comfortable, you have done it right. Your full length mirror won’t let you down.

"Wardrobe Doctor" Marilyn Wetston is the owner of Marilyn’s, 200 Spadina Ave., Toronto, Ont. Host of her radio show on AM 740 every Saturday morning at 8 a.m. Follow her on Facebook to ask your questions,